Cape Verde to hold legislative elections

Cape Verde will today hold nationwide legislative elections. Voters in the West African island-nation will choose between Prime Minister Ulisses

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Photo: File

Cape Verde will today hold nationwide legislative elections.

Voters in the West African island-nation will choose between Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva’s centre-right Movement for Democracy (MpD) and Janira Hopffer Almada’s left-wing African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde (PAICV). Cape Verde’s 72-seat unicameral National Assembly is split between the MpD and the PAICV, 40-29 respectively.

Campaigning has centred on economic issues. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cape Verde has suffered from a 70% decline in tourism revenues, which account for a quarter of the country’s economy. Years of chronic water shortages under Silva’s governance have also taken their toll on daily life; approximately 9% of Cape Verde’s economy depends on agriculture. Both parties have proposed economic relief measures, including increased COVID-19 testing and farm subsidies.

Despite these hardships, expect Silva to remain in power, suffering, at worst, marginal losses. Since Cape Verde’s independence from Portugal in 1975, politics in the archipelago have largely remained stable. Moreover, while the MpD only returned to power in 2016, voters are likely to give the governing party a pass on the issues afflicting the country, especially as economic recovery indicators point to a tourism rebound.

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